I learned a couple of years ago that when The Bottleneck has a secret show, it is best not to question it and just go. I followed this logic in 2018 and was able to see Panic! At The Disco at an intimate venue, which is a big deal when one considers the point they were at in their career. This thought process proved accurate yet again, as Mammoth WVH popped in on July 27, 2021. Meaning that the band’s first-ever show was held right here in Lawrence, Kansas on a Tuesday night in July…yeah, that happened.
Wolfgang Van Halen, the son of the late Eddie Van Halen, leads Mammoth WVH. However, this show proved that Wolfgang is not aiming for a carbon copy of his father’s career. Mammoth WVH is something new and ready to take on the rock scene in a world that will have a new normal for live music. Wolfgang’s music proves through intricate chord progressions and unique vocals that he is taking what he learned from his father and creating a new force in rock music. With a sound that is a little bit of Sixx: A.M. and a whole lot of Wolfgang Van Halen, this group has a ton of potential. Potential that is about to go on the road with Guns N’ Roses.
Caption: The band members of Mammoth WVH salute an eager audience.
The crowd was composed of long-time Van Halen fans, seeming to be there in support of Eddie and his family. People reminisced about the times they were able to see Eddie live and how they felt this would be the start of his legacy’s continuation. There were others who were just excited to be at a show again. However, when the music started, the crowd launched into screams. The energy shifted. It was as if everyone was now immediately on the same page. It felt as though everyone was at their child’s first baseball game, cheering them on, supporting, watching, and waiting for a moment to praise.
The music was just as perfect as being in a crowd with that sort of attitude. There are few artists I have seen that sound almost identical live as to how they do on recording: One of those few is Mammoth WVH. I love everything about their sound, and seeing them find their footing live with such success in sound and stage presence was unforgettable. This was the first the world got to see of Mammoth WVH, and I can almost certainly say that it will not be the last.